Saturday, October 8, 2016

Panel Replacement Front

 I have been looking at “SeeMore” sitting in the garage for some time now. 
What should I do about that "nasty" front panel?

The front panel needed to be replaced. It was all corroded from the leaky battery box and had many severe scratches from an attempt at cleaning.

View from inside shows the many holes in the front panel.
I had previously removed the battery box and may not reinstall it as part of the restoration.  The water inlet hole will be relocated to the other side. 

New aluminum was ordered from “AirParts Inc.”

Here is a close up view showing the deep scratches and corrosion.
I used a black marker to mark rivets to be drilled out.

This is my first attempt at replacing a panel so "here we go!"

Early on in the process when the body was placed back onto the frame I had installed many of these rivets "as new" .  The new panel will be worth the effort to remove them and redo.

The rivets were drilled out with a 1/8 inch drill bit.

Some of the rivet heads remained and were removed with the help of a hammer and chisel.

Once all the necessary rivets were removed the panel was pulled free.
Evidence was discovered showing that water had leaked between the panels.

A new piece of aluminum was cut as a replacement.

In the shop I paced the new piece of aluminum on top of plywood.  I then placed the old panel squarely on top of the new piece and drove a couple of screws through the old holes into the plywood to keep the pieces firmly in place.  .

I then drilled all of the necessary holes through the new piece using the markings that were made earlier

After drilling all of the holes I used a larger drill bit to remove (clean) any burs in the holes.

After thoroughly cleaning the area and caulking the seams I placed the new panel into position.

To help hold it into correct position I used "clecos" in select holes.

I used 1/8 inch clecos.  I drilled the holes out using a 3/16 inch bit to make a perfect hole.
3/16 inch buck rivets were used to reinstall the panel.

With the help of my assistant the panel was buck riveted into place.

It turned out looking great.

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